Opinion

Lawmakers shouldn't look the other way as children die or are maimed because of their parents' faith

To the editor: Tuesday’s Times was a very tough read.

The article about the genital mutilation of two innocent young girls at the behest of their parents appeared a page before another piece about the death of children at the hands of their parents who are members of a group that teaches prayer alone can heal.

My heart breaks for all of the innocent young lives. Some were maimed, and others died. It’s difficult to comprehend any belief system or deity that would allow the brutal maiming and unnecessary death of someone’s child.

Sadly, these children were once without a voice of their own. Thanks to these two articles, as difficult as they were to read, they finally had one.

Marley Sims, Valley Village

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To the editor: Unbelievable. Idaho children continue to die as a result of their pious parents’ faith-based neglect. Yet a prominent advocate of that state’s faith-healing law asks, “As far as adherence to any law, who do you better obey, God or man?”

The answer is that in a democracy, man’s law must prevail. That’s because it generally reflects the will of people who rationally assess life’s realities, applies to everyone within a given jurisdiction, and it readily can be amended.

Not so with “God’s law.” Contrived by pious men who favored one deity or another, it differs from sect to sect. Granted, various sacred texts may have inspired some basic elements of man’s law, but they lack rational guidance to address the full spectrum of modern concerns.

It’s utterly shameful that statutes protecting parents whose children die of medical neglect remain on the books in Idaho and other states.

Robin Groves, Pacific Palisades

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To the editor: In Detroit, genital mutilation of two girls results in a doctor being charged with crimes that may carry a life sentence.

In Idaho, letting your sons die of pneumonia is nobody’s business but your own. I guess it all depends on where you live.

Barry Chess, Westlake Village

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